1 CHART COMPARING UNITED CHURCH OF GOD AND RADIO CHURCH OF GOD FUNDAMENTALS OF BELIEF WITH COMMENTS Compiled by Craig M White NB: apparently there was an original list of fundamentals drawn up in The 20 fundamentals were drawn up some years later. FUNDAMENTALS OF BELIEF, UNITED CHURCH OF GOD FUNDAMENTALS OF BELIEF, RADIO CHURCH OF GOD COMMENTS REGARDING UCG 2.0 ARTICLE 2-FUNDAMENTAL BELIEFS 2.1 PREAMBLE The following are statements regarding the fundamental beliefs of the United Church of God, an International Association. This article is not intended to be a comprehensive statement of the beliefs of the Church. Questions about doctrine and belief will be addressed by a process adopted by the Council of Elders (Council) and approved by the General Conference of Elders (General Conference). It is self-evident that the UCG s doctrinal position is not fully contained herein. The Fundamentals are just that the basics. FUNDAMENTAL BELIEFS We believe in one God, the Father, eternally existing, who is a Spirit, a personal Being of supreme intelligence, knowledge, love, justice, power and authority. He, through Jesus Christ, is the Creator of the heavens and the earth and all that is in them. He is the Source of life and the One for whom human life exists. We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ of Nazareth, who is the Word and has eternally existed. We believe that He is the Messiah, the Christ, the divine Son of the living God, conceived of the Holy Spirit, born in the human flesh of the virgin Mary. We believe that it is by Him that God created all things and that without Him was not anything made that was made. We believe in the Holy Spirit, as the Spirit of God and of Christ Jesus. The Holy Spirit is the power of God and the Spirit of life eternal. 1. We believe in ONE GOD, eternally existing in the heavens, who is a Spirit, a personal Being of supreme intelligence, knowledge, love, justice, power, and authority, the Creator of the heavens and the earth and all that in them is, and the source of life. 2. We believe Jesus of Nazareth was the Messiah, the Christ, the divine Son of the living God, begotten of the Holy Spirit, born in the human flesh of the virgin Mary, and that He is true God and true man, that God created all things by Jesus Christ, and without Him was not anything made that was made. 3. We believe in the Holy Spirit, as the Spirit of God and of Christ Jesus; the power of God with which all things were created and made; that thru the Holy Spirit, God is everywhere present; that the Holy Spirit is divine Love, Faith, Understanding, Power, Joy and all the attributes of God -- the Spirit of life eternal. 1 Here the binitarian belief is clearly subordinist.
2 2.1.2 We believe that Scripture, both the Old and the New Testament, is God s revelation, and His complete, expressed will to humanity. Scripture is inspired in thought and word, infallible in the original writings, is the supreme and final authority in faith and in life, and is the foundation of all truth We believe that Satan is a spirit being who is the adversary of God and the children of God. Satan has been given dominion over the world for a specific period of time. Satan has deceived humanity into rejecting God and His law. Satan has ruled by deception with the aid of a host of demons who are rebellious angels, spirit beings, who followed Satan in his rebellion We believe that humanity was created in the image of God with the potential to become children of God, partakers of the divine nature. God formed humanity of flesh, which is material substance. Human beings live by the breath of life, are mortal, subject to corruption and decay, without eternal life, except as the gift of God under God s terms and conditions as expressed in the Bible. We believe that God placed before Adam and Eve the choice of eternal life through obedience to God, or death through sin. Adam and Eve yielded to temptation and disobeyed God. As a result, sin entered the world, and through sin, death. Death now reigns over all humanity because all have sinned We believe that sin is the transgression of the law. The law is spiritual, perfect, holy, just and good. The law defines God s love and is based upon the two great principles of love toward God and love toward neighbor, and is immutable and binding. The Ten Commandments are the ten points of God s law of love. We believe that breaking any one point of the law brings upon a person the penalty of sin. We believe that this fundamental spiritual law reveals 4. We believe the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are God's revelation and complete expressed will to man, inspired in thought and word, and infallible in the original writings; that they are of supreme and final authority in faith and in life, and the source of Truth. We believe all teachings contrary to the Holy Bible are false. We accept the Bible alone, and not the Bible and "something else." 5. We believe Satan is a personality, a spirit being; and as the Devil is the adversary of God and the children of God; and that he now has dominion over the world which God allowed him for a definite "week" of seven thousand-year days -- the first six of which are his six working days for his labor of deception, leading the children of Adam into rejection of God's law and therefore rebellion against God -- the seventh thousand-year day of which will be the DAY OF THE LORD (the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God), during which Satan will be forced to rest from his work of deception while Christ rules the nations of the earth. Satan's power is merely to influence and lead, not to force men arbitrarily against their will. He has ruled by deception with the aid of a host of demons which are rebellious angels, spirit beings, who have followed Satan in his rebellion. 6. We believe man was created in the image of God, formed of flesh, which is material substance, living by the breath of life, and is wholly mortal, subject to corruption and decay, without possibility of eternal life inherent in himself, except as the gift of God under God's terms and conditions as expressed in the Bible; that God placed before the first man, Adam, his free choice of eternal life through obedience to God's commandments, or death through sin, that Adam sinned, thereby incurring the death penalty without having received eternal life, having yielded to the temptation of Satan, and that the sinful fleshly nature with its sensual desires and its pride passed on all men, so that all become sinners, thus bringing upon themselves the penalty, death. 7. We believe sin is the transgression of the Law; that the Law is spiritual, perfect, holy, just, and good, summed up in the word "LOVE;" that it involves the two great principles of love to God, and love to neighbor, and that the Ten Commandments compose the ten points of that Law, and that the breaking of only one point makes one guilty of sin. We believe this fundamental spiritual Law reveals to us the only right and true way to life -- the only possible way of 2 Why did the UCG Fundamentals not incorporate the 7 thousand year plan?
3 the only way to true life and the only possible way of happiness, peace and joy. All unhappiness, misery, anguish and woe have come from transgressing God's law We believe God so loved this world of helpless sinners that He gave His only begotten Son, who, though in all points tempted as we are, lived without sin in the human flesh. That Son, Jesus Christ, died as a sacrifice for the sins of humanity. His life, because He is the Creator of all humanity, is of greater value than the sum total of all human life. His death is, therefore, sufficient to pay the penalty for every human being s sins. In paying this penalty He has made it possible, according to God s plan, for each person and humanity as a whole to have their sins forgiven and to be released from the death penalty We believe that the Father raised Jesus Christ from the dead after His body lay three days and three nights in the grave, thus making immortality possible for mortal man. He thereafter ascended into heaven, where He now sits at the right hand of God the Father as our High Priest and Advocate We believe that all who truly repent of their sins in full surrender and willing obedience to God, and who by faith accept Jesus Christ as their personal Savior, have their sins forgiven by an act of divine grace. Such individuals are justified, pardoned from the penalty of sin, and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, which literally abides within them and supplies the divine love that alone can fulfill the law and produce righteousness. They are baptized by the Spirit into the body of Christ, which is the true Church of God. We believe in a true change in life and attitude. Only those who have the indwelling presence of and are being led by the Holy Spirit are Christ s We believe in the ordinance of water baptism by immersion following repentance. Through the laying on of hands, with prayer, the believer receives the Holy Spirit and becomes a part of the spiritual body of Jesus Christ We believe in observing the New Testament Passover on the night of the 14th of Abib, the anniversary of the death of our Savior We believe that the seventh day of the week is the Sabbath happiness, peace and joy; that it has existed from Adam, is immutable and binding thru-out eternity; and that all unhappiness, misery, poverty, anguish, and woe has come from its transgression. 8. We believe God so loved this world of helpless sinners that He GAVE His only begotten Son, who, though in all points tempted as we are, lived without sin in the human flesh, and died for us as a representative and substitutionary sacrifice thus making it legally possible for man's sins to be forgiven and for God to release him from their penalty, since Jesus, whose life was of greater value than the sum-total of all other human lives (because it was He who brought them into being) has thus paid the penalty in man's stead. 9. We believe that Jesus Christ was raised from the dead after His body reposed three days and three nights in the grave, thus making immortality possible for mortal man; that He thereafter ascended into heaven where He now sits at the right hand of God the Father, as our High Priest and Advocate. 10. We believe that all who truly repent of their sins in full surrender and willing obedience to God, accepting Jesus Christ as personal Saviour in faith believing, are forgiven their sins by an act of divine GRACE, justified, pardoned from the penalty of past sins, reconciled to God, and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit which literally comes and abides within, supplying the divine LOVE which alone can fulfill the law and produce righteousness; and thus are baptized by the Spirit into the body of Christ which is the true CHURCH OF GOD. We believe in a true change in life and attitude and that only those who have the indwelling presence of, and are being led by the Holy Spirit are Christ's. Bible evidence of being thus baptized by the Spirit is the fruit of the Spirit in one's life. (See Matthew 7:20; Galatians 5:22-23). "Manifestations" regulated by I Corinthians We believe in TWO ORDINANCES for this age; water baptism by immersion, into Jesus Christ (not a denomination) for the remission of sins, following genuine repentance; and the Lord's Supper as continuation of the Passover, observed at night on the anniversary of the death of our Saviour, the 14th of Abib. 12. We believe that from Friday sunset to Saturday sunset, the 3 Note: Passover is 14 Abib, not 15 Abib. Why doesn t the UCG state
4 of the Lord our God. On this day we are commanded to rest from our labors and worship God, following the teachings and example of Jesus, the apostles and the New Testament Church We believe in the commanded observance of the seven annual Holy Days given to ancient Israel by God and kept by Jesus Christ, the apostles and the New Testament Church. These Holy Days reveal God s plan of salvation We believe that those meats that are designated "unclean" by God in Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14 are not to be eaten We believe that Christians are forbidden by the commandments of God from taking human life, directly or indirectly, and that bearing arms is contrary to this fundamental belief. Therefore, we believe that Christians should not voluntarily become engaged in military service. If they are involuntarily engaged in military service, we believe they should refuse conscientiously to bear arms and, to the extent possible, to refuse to come under military authority We believe in God s enduring righteousness. That righteousness is demonstrated by God's faithfulness in fulfilling all of the promises He made to the father of the faithful, Abraham. As promised, God multiplied Abraham s lineal descendants so that Abraham literally became the "father" of many nations. We believe that God, as promised, materially prospered Abraham s lineal descendants Isaac and Jacob (whose name He later changed to Israel). We believe that God, through Abraham s Seed, Jesus Christ, is making salvation available to all humanity regardless of their physical lineage. Salvation is not therefore a right of birth. It is freely open to all whom God calls, and those who are regarded as descendants of Abraham are those of the faith, heirs according to the promises. We believe that the knowledge that God has fulfilled and continues to fulfill the physical promises made to Abraham and his children, and is fulfilling the spiritual promise through Jesus Christ, is critical to understanding the message of the prophets and seventh day of the week is the Sabbath of the Lord our God. On this day we must rest from our labors following the commands and example of the apostle Paul, the New Testament Church, and Jesus. 13. We believe the seven Annual Holy days as given to ancient Israel by God through Moses, kept by Christ, the Apostle Paul, and the New Testament Church, as evidenced by the books of Acts and Corinthians, are to be kept today. The sacrifices, which were added, are not to be kept on those days nor any other day of the year. During the spring festival of seven days, leavening in any form is not to be eaten, as Paul instructed the Corinthians. 14. We believe that certain foods called "unclean" are not to be eaten under any circumstances as they are harmful to body and health and also violate our bodies which are called the temple of the Holy Spirit of God. 15. We believe that Christian disciples of Christ are forbidden by Him and the commandments of God to kill, or in any manner directly or indirectly to take human life; by whatsoever means; we believe that bearing arms is directly contrary to this fundamental doctrine of our belief; we therefore conscientiously refuse to bear arms or to come under the military authority. 16. We believe the PROMISES were made to Abraham and his "seed," Christ, and that the Covenants (including the New Covenant), and the promises pertain alone to ISRAEL. That our white, English-speaking peoples of today are enjoying the national phases of the promises -- that of MATERIAL blessings -- called the "Birthright," which was handed down thru the sons of Joseph, Ephraim and Manasseh, whose descendants we are; but that the "Scepter" -- the promise of kings, and the SPIRITUAL phase of the promises, including Christ and salvation thru Him -- was given to and shall not depart from Judah of whom are the race we know today as the Jews. We believe eternal life is God's gift resting upon the promises made to Abraham and his "seed," Christ, designating this earth (made new), not heaven, as our eternal home and reward. That salvation is thru Christ alone, and not inherited thru the Birthright (right of birth) and that salvation is freely open to Gentiles who, thru Christ, become Abraham's children and are adopted into 4 that it is sunset to sunset and that it is a sign? Thankfully our literature does. More should have been made of the fact that these are health laws. It is obvious that the UCG has adopted the lost 10 tribes of Israel doctrine, but it needs to be more explicit.
5 its application to the world in which we live. the family of Israel and become heirs according to the promises We believe God s purpose for mankind is to prepare those whom He calls, and who elect through a life of overcoming sin, developing righteous character, and growing in grace and knowledge, to possess the Kingdom and to become kings and priests reigning with Christ on this earth after His return. We believe that the reason for mankind s existence is literally to be born as spirit beings into the family of God We believe that the Church is that body of believers who have received, and are being led by, the Holy Spirit. The true Church of God is a spiritual organism. Its biblical name is "The Church of God." We believe that the mission of the Church is to preach the gospel (good news) of the coming Kingdom of God to all nations as a witness, and to help reconcile to God such people as are now being called. We believe that it is also the mission of the Church of God to strengthen, edify and nurture the children of God in the love and admonition of our Lord Jesus Christ We believe in tithing as a way of honoring God with our substance and as a means of serving Him in the preaching of the gospel, the care of the Church, attending the festivals and helping the needy We believe that the only hope of eternal life for mortal humans lies in the resurrection through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. We believe that at the return of Jesus Christ a resurrection to spirit life will take place for all who have been God's faithful servants. 17. We believe God's purpose is the creation of high spiritual character, and therefore the very object of redemption is to rescue mankind from SIN (transgressing the fundamental spiritual law), and its resulting degradation, misery and unhappiness; and that the object of the present dispensation is to fit those whom God now calls, with their consent, thru a life of trial and test and overcoming sin, growing in grace and knowledge to possess the KINGDOM and to become kings and priests reigning with Christ after His return. We believe Christians must therefore live a clean, pure, holy life by faith according to the Bible standard, with constant Bible study and surrendered prayer, trusting God in and for all things, that yielding to pride and lust of the flesh is sin, that God hears and literally answers the believing prayers of His children who keep His commandments - - according as He has promised in His Word, including physical healing, deliverance from temptation and trouble, providing the way for every actual need. 18. We believe the Church is merely that body of believers who have, and are being led by the Holy Spirit; that the true Church of God is not a denomination; that the inspired name for this spiritual organism is "THE CHURCH OF GOD;" that the Bible name for each local assembly is "THE CHURCH OF GOD," and, considered collectively, "The Churches of God;" that the mission of the Church in this time is to preach the Gospel (Good News) of the coming KINGDOM OF GOD, (with special stress on the warning to America and Britain of the prophecies pertaining to them), into all nations as a witness, reaching the vast multitudes with power and conviction; to reconcile to God, and to save, thru Christ, such people as are now called; and to minister to the Church of God, strengthening and edifying the brethren in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. 19. We believe the only hope of eternal life for mortal man lies in the resurrection; thru the indwelling (now) of the Holy Spirit; and that there shall be a bodily resurrection of the just and unjust -- the just to 5 Clearly the teaching is that the UCG believes that the new birth occurs at the resurrection and that God is a Family. Why is this not being taught? The UCG statement should include reference to the Ezekiel Watchman Warning Message (see Ezek 33:6)
6 We believe that after Jesus Christ has ruled on this earth for 1,000 years, there will be a resurrection to physical life of the vast majority of all people who have ever lived. We believe that after these people have had an opportunity to live a physical life, if they become converted, they too will receive eternal life. We also believe that those who reject God s offer of salvation will reap eternal death. eternal life as spirit beings upon earth, the unjust to receive the second and final death in hell (Gehenna) fire in which they shall perish in eternal punishment We believe in the personal, visible, premillennial return of the Lord Jesus Christ to rule the nations on earth as King of kings and to continue His priestly office as Lord of lords. At that time, He will sit upon the throne of David. During His thousand-year reign upon the earth, He will restore all things and establish the Kingdom of God forever. 20. We believe in the personal, visible, premillennial, imminent return of the Lord Jesus Christ to rule the nations of earth as King of Kings, and to continue His priestly office as Lord of Lords; that at that time He will sit upon the throne of David restoring all things during a thousand year reign upon earth and establish the KINGDOM OF GOD upon earth forever. 6